This post made possible through the support of Cochlear. The typical signs of hearing loss in children graphics were provided by Cochlear. All opinions and experiences are my own.
Every year throughout elementary and middle school we had a wellness exam which was conducted by the school. We were weighed, our height checked, body mass index, vision and a hearing test. Raise your left hand if you hear the sound in your left ear, right hand if you hear it in your right ear. I remember a few times when some of my classmates chose to fool around by raising the opposite hand, only to end up with a note going home to be seen by a professional. Do you recall your first hearing test?
When the girls were born, the hospital administered several types of tests, one of which was a hearing test. I don’t recall this with Jason, he’s 19 now. Being that Anabelle was born 10 weeks early there were many concerns we as parents, as well as her pediatrician, had. Would her vision be affected, her breathing, or perhaps her hearing. When the majority of her screening results came back clear, including the newborn hearing screening, we were elated. Anabelle grew and thrived. She was a little slower on some milestones but I was keeping a watchful eye.
Shortly after her first birthday I brought up a concern with her pediatrician over her lack of attention to being called by name. It felt as if she was just ignoring me. The pediatrician referred us to an ENT nearby for a hearing test. The initial test came back with really bad results – I’m already starting to tear up just thinking about how I felt at that moment. All I remember is lines, charts, graphs that should have shown peaks but were flat. Both ears, one worse than the other. Panic set in pretty quickly as my mind started to race wondering where I could get answers. The doctor noted that she had some fluid in her ears and mentioned ear tubes. He also wanted to do a more extensive hearing test before going any further.
When we returned for the advanced hearing test we were put in a room with speakers in different corners and areas of the room. Random sounds and noises would come from any given speaker and the screener was making notations as to if and when Anabelle responded. She wasn’t responding all that much. There was a lot of anxiety starting to develop while I waited to speak to the doctor.
Fortunately he put me back at ease by explaining that the hearing loss Anabelle was suffering was due to the fluid in her ear and not permanent. Our options were to schedule her for surgery to insert tubes, or wait it out a little longer in the hopes that she would grow out of it. He also suggested we switch to a cup instead of using any bottles and not to lay her down for at least 20-30 minutes after she’s had fluids to drink. He also explained that due to her decreased hearing, her ability to talk/babble would be limited temporarily – which is what brought us to his office.
Even though we were lucky that the typical signs of hearing loss she was experiencing wasn’t permanent hearing loss, it was all pretty scary for me and quickly reminded me of a young mom I had met while working in property management. She moved into the building I was managing while pregnant and her daughter was born deaf. She was so strong and so loving and I remember clear as day the day they came home from having Cochlear Implants done shortly after her daughters first birthday. Tears of happiness were streaming down her face as she recounted how her daughter responded to her voice.
Would you be able to notice the typical signs of hearing loss? It’s different in infants/toddlers and school-aged children and goes beyond just not hearing well. Do you know that speech, language and some developmental milestones are all connected to hearing?
Typical Signs of Hearing Loss
Cochlear has helped over 450,000 people worldwide have access to sound and are passionate about helping provide parents with the online support they need to help them make the right decision – one that starts with an appointment with your doctor. Only your doctor can determine candidacy and answer medical questions. If your child is experiencing any of these typical signs of hearing loss, you aren’t alone. Not sure where to start? Finding a hearing specialist is as simple as clicking on “Find a Hearing Specialist” at the top left of the IWantYouToHear.com page. Cochlear created this website as an online resources for parents not sure where to turn to because they want to be a lifetime partner to families of children with hearing loss.
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Disclosure: A cochlear implant is a Class III medical device that is federally regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). To obtain a hearing implant, one must be a candidate and qualify for the device. A medical professional – such as a hearing implant specialist, an audiologist or doctor –will determine candidacy and answer medical-specific questions. This post made possible through the support of Cochlear. All opinions and experiences are my own. The disclosure is done in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 10 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.